Indian football – such a forgotten giant (Part 2)

Chhetri is currently India’s highest level player. He made his way into the reserve team of Portuguese club Sporting Lisbon (where Cristiano Ronaldo was born) in July 2012, in the “biggest transfer of Indian football history”, according to commentator Arunava Chaudhuri. Another motivation for Indian sport comes from history.

To defeat the British

Indian fans cheered Lionel Messi on, but if Leo was born there, he wouldn’t have been as good as he is now.

The British colonial army has brought football to India since the 19th century and the Indian team defeated the national teams themselves to win the national championship trophy in 1911, one of the beginning steps for the journey. fight for independence. But now, the English Premier League is “dominating” Indian football in a new way. At the Bhutia Football Academy in Delhi, Somil, Vansh and Tannay (14) said every boy’s dream there was to go to Europe to play football: “In the Premier League, I support Chelsea, and in La Liga It’s Barcelona, ​​”said Somil. “But I don’t know much about Indian football.”

In December 2010, AIFF signed a $ 1.3 million deal for 15 years with sports management company IMG Reliance, an Indian branch, to promote the development of domestic football. Dhar says improving I-League is a priority. But that was more than two years ago, and experts say they haven’t seen any significant improvements. AIFF also held friendlies against Venezuela and Argentina (with Lionel Messi) in 2011, bringing to the Salk Lake stadium the number of spectators filled with 120,000 seats in Kolkata just to see the idol. But those hit events made little sense, as local matches were still abandoned.

Last year, Celebrity Management Group hosted a soccer tournament called Premier League Soccer, costing about $ 7 million, for retired World Cup players, including the former France international. Robert Pires. However, the stadiums were not prepared at the right time, resulting in the tournament being postponed indefinitely and forgotten. Again, those efforts did not create a significant improvement in the domestic playground.

Kolkata’s teams, Bohun Bagan and East Bengal, are the strongest Indian clubs with a 86-year history of rivalry, comparable to the Scottish teams Celtic and Rangers. In fact, a Kolkata derby can easily attract about 100,000 spectators to the field.